The Topic of Professional Dress

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by Ms.Jasztal, Aug 13, 2007.

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  1. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Aug 14, 2007

    yikes...will make me think twice :) :)
     
  2. teacherSMK

    teacherSMK Habitué

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    Our school is very small, and took these points into account when making the teacher dress code. I, myself, am not thin. Students are required to wear belts if there are loops, teachers are not. Students are told at the beginning of the year that teachers have privileges that they do not. If they complain too much about the dress code, we will go to uniforms next year. Personally, I think that the st udent dress code at our school is rather laid back, and the students are blessed that it is not stricter.
    The teacher dress code at my school is very casual, but with detailed issues to prevent confusion. i.e. dressy t-shirts are ok, but not the ones with logos advertising anything, nor plain white ones unless they are being worn under another garment. I don't know, I feel for my size I dress very nicely, and have never been sloppy or slobbish. I feel that teachers should be able to be comfortable, and not trapped when teaching. just my opinion.
     
  3. meatball77

    meatball77 Comrade

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    I asked the school secretary if there was anything odd in the teacher dress code (because I need to buy new clothes) and she gave me a strange look and said no. I double checked to make sure I'd be fine with my Nike's (I'm a music teacher and jump a lot) and she said that we could wear jeans on fridays.

    I worked in a district that required all women to wear "hosery" luckily my principal decided that socks were hosery. District rules created by committees are often frustrating because what is appropriate for a Kindergarten teacher isn't appropriate for a high school teacher.

    Our students will wear uniforms but as we arn't students we won't wear them.

    Shirts having to be tucked in is a terrible rule. I don't have a single shirt that I tuck in, I don't think they make them in my size, they're all long enough and don't look sloppy, they're just designed to worn untucked. Tucking shirts in is dorky.
     
  4. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    :lol: I don't own a shirt that needs to be tucked in either. For most women, shirts are made to be fitted and worn out not tucked in. I do pay attention to that kind of thing and try not to wear shirts that are straight and look slouchier.
     
  5. dizzybri14

    dizzybri14 Companion

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    Aug 15, 2007

    When I student taught in OH I would have to dress extremely professional, but since moving to NC the "dress code" is not as strict. We don't have an actual dress code, but it is an unwritten rule that you are to look nice. We are only allowed to wear jeans on Fridays or field trips. I usually wear skirts, or dress pants with a nice shirt. I do wear flip flops to school, but they aren't the cheap plastic ones you could see on the beach.
     
  6. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    I like the idea of being responsible for my own professional dress. What usually happens is there are one or two people who dress inappropriately, and rather than sit them down and correct them, there is a school wide dress code implemented that cramps everyone.

    For all y'all who have said you would love to have a set uniform to wear each day - just implement your own uniform! Dockers and polos or button downs or a sweater. Get several of each, all in colors that go together, and voila! Your uniform is ready each day. I had a friend who actually did this. She found a great sale at Penney's, bought 5 pair slacks, 4 blouses and 4 sweaters, all that went together, and she called them her "uniforms." Every morning was easy.
     
  7. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Aug 15, 2007

    Warning: :hijack: ahead!

    :eek: :eek: All certificated staff members.... :eek: :eek:

    Are you kidding me?!?!?! :help: This was published as a professional, even legal document??? :eek:hmy: :crosseyed This is probably better suited to a different thread, I know, but I can't stand it! :naughty: There is NO SUCH WORD as certificated! :down: The term is CERTIFIED. And we wonder why we aren't treated as professionals! :dunno: (Not judging the poster, what was published wan't your work.) Stepping off of my :soapbox: now.
     
  8. paperheart

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    As luck would have it, I was the one in charge of passing out the dress code pamphlets at registration today. When I read it I noticed students are not allowed to wear HEADBANDS or scarves. Teachers are expected to follow suit. I have been in love with headbands all this past week. They work so well with my hair. What could possibly go wrong with a headband. weapon? distraction? I don't get it.
     
  9. meatball77

    meatball77 Comrade

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    Aug 15, 2007

    You know gang members wear headbands and scarfs. . . . . ;)
     
  10. mincc

    mincc Companion

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    When I was a TA, we and the teachers could not wear headbands or scarves on our heads or around our necks. Same with sweaters that you tie around your shoulders. One reason: a student could get mad and attempt to strangle you with said scarf/band. Another reason, a student could hide dangerous or prohibited items in a scarf or headband. I worked with many severely emotionally disturbed students, so I can see the thinking behind it in that situation. My husband is in law enforcement and he understood it immediately. Me, I was wondering at first.

    OTOH, we were required to wear ID badges on a lanyard around our necks.....:confused:
     
  11. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    I'd hope, mincc, that the lanyard was the "breakaway" kind that gives way when pressure's applied (and they're designed that way on purpose for safety's sake).
     
  12. corps2005

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    Wow!

    :eek:hmy: Hosiery? Oh, I would be in so much trouble! I never hose and don't plan on wearing hose. I'm pretty pale, but hose always causes my legs to itch and sometimes they break out in rashes because of it. I think our rule book states that we are supposed to wear hosiery, but no one has addressed it. I wonder if a doctor's note excuses you? :p

    Our school just cracked down on jogging suits last year and blue jeans because, like many of your co-workers as well, several faculty members at our school came to work quite underdressed. I try not to buy strapless shoes, since I am leaving my school at the end of the school year and realize that many schools do not allow strapless shoes.

    Do most schools not allow open-toed shoes. You know that kind that play peek-a-boo? :confused:
     
  13. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    I would think that the addiction to hose is a regional thing, but you are also from the south, so there goes that theory! I don't know. I know that it is so ingrained in my psyche that I cringe when women appearing on What Not to Wear are not wearing hose when wearing a dress/skirt! Their legs look, well, for lack of a better term, naked! I think (MHO) that legs look better in hose -- maybe it's a generational thing. I know that my shoes fit differently -- in fact better when I am wearing hose.
     
  14. devinallen

    devinallen New Member

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    Aug 16, 2007

    Aye ya! So many comments I have, great thread! I worked at a preschool/kindergarten that had a dress code for teachers which I thought worked well. Polo shirts in the warmer months, a school fleece in the colder months. They gave us several of different colors so is wasn't so boring.

    I like to wear more formal cothing, I agree that is does give more respect to your position in the classroom. However I am a second grade teacher as well as teaching the art classes for the whole school. This kind of position doesn't fit too well with formal clothes. What to do?

    I go for a combination of nice casual and cheap. I live in China so this is not so hard to find, and jeans are more expensive than slacks so, problem solved. Also I have a thing for bright-colored, Hawaii type shirts. I used to justify by sayin "I'm a kindergarten teacher, bright colors are appropiate". Now I say "I'm a second grade teacher, bright colors are appropiate". Ha ha!

    Also I find all-black sneakers look better than trainers and more comfortable and more durable than dress shoes.

    One last thing. I have a rather large tattoo that is hidden by a short-sleeve shirt. It's rather innocent, two carp, a lotus flower, some cat tails, a dragon fly, but is does extend to my upper arm and it only takes about two days of recess duty before the kids find it. I just recite the Dr. Suess "One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish" and that happily diffuses it.

    Cheers All!
     
  15. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

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    Aug 17, 2007

    I just got my updated dress code email today. No bare legs, no flip-flops, no jeans (EVER) no t-shirts. . . we are to dress in a businesslike manner every day, to earn more respect and so visitors can tell, at a glance, which were the professors and which were the students. I agree with it.

    Back in the middle school, I wore skirts for about fifteen years and finally let myself go and wore nice pants and tops. I did, and still do, notice a difference in the behavior levels of the students when the teacher dresses the same way the students do.

    Younger teachers sometimes do not realize that their usual mode of trendy dress is not appropriate for the classroom, and older teachers sometimes do not realize that they look like dowds. Some of the women in my former school wore huge denim jumpers, embroidered with apples and letters of the alphabet or holiday motifs, with a t-shirt, almost daily. It was ghastly, especially when they wore sneakers/sandals and socks with it. Can we say "Bag Lady?" Some of the younger teachers came to work wearing bra-strap shirts and mini-skirts, with high-heeled FM spaghetti-strap shoes, or strapless sundresses! Can we say "streetwalker?"

    So yes, I guess I'm glad our way of dressing has been officially mandated. It's the only way some people can be made to look like the college-educated adult in the room.
     
  16. hipteachergirl

    hipteachergirl Companion

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    Well, I'm not technically teaching yet, so I can't say what my school is doing, but I know my school that I'm ST at is somewhat relaxed. I don't know about any student teachers that come in with thongs showing, bellies, and whatnot, but that is a BIG no-no at my college. I dunno, I think we are all just more professional than that, because it has never been an issue. As for piercings and tattoos, we are NOT allowed to have facial piercings or anything. I know a few of us have tattoos on our feet that might show, but nothing bad (I have a dragonfly). As for lowerback tats, I don't think they should be showing anyway. I'm a larger-chested gal and I guess I'm just SUPER-conscious of cleavage. I try to never show it, b/c it just embarrasses me anyway. I'm waiting to go shopping for more "teacher" clothes until after I start my placement. I want to see what the dress code and atmosphere are like before I shell out the big bucks for more clothes. Generally though, if I am in a placement my wardrobe consists of dressy slacks (black, brown, grey pinstripe or other neutral) and a blouse or a sweater. I will either wear heels or ballet flats (I love that they are in style, SO much more comfortable yet still dressy). I don't wear a suit, but I think I still look professional. I would love to see some pics of everyone in their "average" teacher outfits.
     
  17. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Aug 17, 2007

    For me its khakis, nice jeans, dress pants or slacks everyday, except Friday. I have them in every shade imaginable (a little obsessed I know). i never wear shorts, ever. For a shirt it varies by season, I wear long and short sleeved polos, button up shirts without ties (plad/stripped or solid), button up shirts with ties, sweaters, or some type of respectable no collored (spelling?) shirt. On Friday it is always some type of school spirt shirt with my clean sneakers. For footwear its usually my slip on dress shoes because they are soo comfortable I have other ones, but never wear them.
     
  18. January_Violet

    January_Violet Comrade

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    Aug 17, 2007

    :D LOL @ the post. Many people think this is how teachers are suspose to look. :lol: :lol:

     
  19. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    As a brand-new teacher, I was sooooo guilty of the apples embroidered on the denim jumper thing. I was just so excited to be a teacher, and to me, that was how a teacher "should" look. Imagine how silly that must have looked on a 21 year old! Thankfully, I grew out of it and gave all of those things to Goodwill....now I'm much more LLBean or Lands End.

    I think neat, tidy jeans are ok if they fit in with the school's culture (in my school, they most definitely do not). I had much bigger issues with the one Kindergarten teacher who often showed up with pj bottoms and big sweatshirts, or with low-cut cord pants and thongs showing. And it was purposeful. She told me once that she color-coordinated her thongs with her tops because she liked when they showed....she only lasted about 1 year at my school, quit and moved in with her boyfriend in another state.
    Kim
     
  20. Kindergarten31

    Kindergarten31 Cohort

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    Dress code

    We have a dress code in my county-which has some specifics, but mainly says to dress "professionally". Most of the teachers dress professionally, but there are always a few that push the limit. I once had a parent tell me that some of the teachers looked like they were going to the beach. I do live in Florida, and it certainly get very hot, but I usually go from my air-conditioned house to my air-conditioned car to my air-conditioned classroom. Some teachers use the hot weather as an excuse to wear capris, tank-style tops and flip-flops and they DO look like they are going to the beach. Our school code says the admin. will speak to anyone dressed inappropriately, but I have never seen it happen. And it doesn't matter if you are dressed in "beachy" clothes or slacks and a blouse-you are still hot when you are on bus duty!
     
  21. paperheart

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    It makes sense and that is sort of where I thought the reasoning came from (that and gang colors), but it sort of makes me wonder where we draw the line for teacher and student dress codes and general rules to prevent violence. After all, sharp pencils could be weapons and knowledge could be used against us, so maybe we shouldn't assign work or teach lessons :lol:
     
  22. FloridaFreund

    FloridaFreund Rookie

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    How are you able to dress "professionally," meaning nice slacks and blouse or a dress, if you teach children. Am I wrong or have children been known to splatter paint, clay, fly loose with the markers and crayons, or even loose control of their bodily functions on occasion? I definitely wouldn't want to wear a $100+ outfit to my classroom!:confused:
     
  23. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    I worked in one district and also did my student teaching in a district with teachers in uniform. It was the same uniform as the children - Navy and white. I personally, can't play off a navy skirt or jumper. I look like a 6th grader. In fact, without my whistle, I have been asked twice what I was doing in the hall!

    Actually, I like wearing uniforms. We also bought sweatshirts for school spirt day from the PTA. It was like our contribution...so they would not bug us about other things the rest of the year! :haha: I like blue, so it worked for me. I can actually wear girl's size 16, and get some pretty good deals on sweaters, vests, and pants!

    Best part about the teachers in uniform was the cohesiveness and identity of the staff and children. We always knew when a parent or visitor was in the building or some neighborhood kid was on the playground!

    It made it easy to tell if our little country was being invaded!!
     
  24. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Pre-k and kdg should be somewhat more relaxed

    I personally think that pre-k and kindergarten teachers should have a more relaxed dress code. I know lots of folks 40 and over who never wear gym shoes, and are comfortable in dresses, stockings, or suits and dress shoes and other business clothes year round.

    I just don't happen to be one of them!

    Any job that requires me to bend, stoop, lift, stretch, and work with children who will kick, bite, spit, paint, vomit, bleed, and have bodily waste at any given moment should not require business attire! It is just insane! My dry cleaners bill would be higher than my light bill! I don't mind sending shirts and pants to the cleaners, just so I don't have to iron!!! But I feel you must have wash and wear pants, and you must wear an apron, smock or light jacket, in my opinion, when working with young children.

    Anytime I am observing, training, or doing other work with teachers in the preschool setting and notice they are dressed for an office job, I see a strong resistance to exerting time and energy on children. They don't want to bend, or stoop, they don't want the children to touch them. They jump back two feet when a child starts throwing up.

    Even with universal precautions, I think the nature of early childhood requires more sensitivity and understanding, and therefore, appropriate dress in my mind, means clothing that can withstand wear and tear of young children.
     
  25. FloridaFreund

    FloridaFreund Rookie

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    I want to bring this topic up again because I am really curious about this professional dress code at some schools. Do they really expect Pre-K, Kinder, and even 1st grade teachers to wear their business casual/professional clothes? How do you deal with the paint, clay, markers, bodily fluids, etc that might end up all over a 100$ pair of pants?
    And, what about the shoes? Somebody mentioned it was required to wear business style or non-athletic style shoes. How do you wear heals when chasing around 5 year olds or walk in those sandy playgrounds?:confused:
     
  26. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Even with older kids, it's easy to mess up your clothes. I had this great new shirt (clearance at Talbot's -but still great!) and the first day I wore it, an Expo marker splattered black ink on it. I had just taken the markers out of my car and the ink was really warm so when I took the cap off, ink splattered my shirt. Of course that could happen in business during a presentation too.
     
  27. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    payless, BYGO...buy one get one free

    find something you like, and buy three pair!

    see my post...we must have been typing together!

    I don't ever enter a pre-k room without a smock or apron!
     
  28. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Brendan, are you sure you weren't my 8th grade social studies teacher? He ALWAYS wore pants... so when we saw him at Outdoor Ed in shorts, one of my friends goes, "hey Mr D, you're not wearing any pants!!!" She will NEVER live that down.
     
  29. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    You can be professional looking without a suit and heels. Nice slacks and a top/sweater are acceptable. I know several teachers who bring a pair of comfy shoes to use in the classroom, and if they have a meeting or another official meeting they will do the "ol Superman in the phone booth" and switch.

    As someone else said, a smock or something would also be appropriate to protect clothing.
     
  30. meatball77

    meatball77 Comrade

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    Knit dresses and denim jumpers are worn by elementary teachers for a reason. They're professional and comfortable.
     
  31. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    one district told me that demin is out! even on fridays...all you can do for dress down day is wear the school polo shirt or sweatshirt that is sold by PTA!

    what is the world coming to??
     
  32. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    We can thank those teachers who lack good judgement for these rules. :whistle:

    Denim can be dressy or casual depending on what you wear with it. If you wear a T- shirt and sneakers, why of course, I could see that as being too casual for the classroom. On the otherhand, if you wore denim( w/out holes, not faded) and a blouse, sweater, and perhaps a belt... why then you've just put denim in a new light.

    I personally don't see all the problems with dressing professionally. I dress accordingly. I don't dress too trendy because I don't want to be taken as a student, but I don't dress frumpy or sloppy either. It seems so sad that some teachers can't use common sense and dress appropriately for a classroom. I mean, as in, nothing hanging out.
     
  33. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Among the principles of human nature that also drives history: Rules don't create misbehavior, they're responses to misbehavior. If everyone who wore denim dressed it up as Frizz suggests, there'd be no reason to ban it. But there's always someone in the crowd who has to test the boundaries...
     
  34. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    I did a trial day (paid sub while interviewing) at a ritzy day care for a major research and dev. firm.

    This was in LA LA land, and of course, most of the kids were outside. Despite what they say, it does rain in southern California. They were still outside. This was just nuts to me! I went out, with a jacket and a hood, and I was miserable! They were free to run in and out as they choose, even to eat lunch and snack outside. (this is the norm in Calif.) Also, clothes were optional for them. "children can decide if clothing is necessary."

    The second day, I put on my apron. When I went outside, I saw kids painting with green tempera paint, wearing nothing with underwear, and standing in the mud. Okay, this may be a whole new thread....but anyway, this one kid had green paint from head to toe, and he invited me to join him. (the whole program is watched by video) I started looking for a paint brush. (silly me) He says, "No, here! Just stick your hands in the paint like this!" He leaned on me while he was finger painting. I don't remember my expression, but I said, "I think I will play somewhere else, thanks."

    I got called in the office that minute. I was told, "Why are you wearing an apron? We encourage teachers to be free and get messy and have fun. Your apron tells the children it is wrong to get dirty."

    Uh,"No.", I replied..."The children can get dirty, but I need to catch the bus, and I don't want green paint in my hair." Unlike my fellow staff members, I do not wash my hair every day...I go to a beauty salon, spend go-gobs of money and sit for two hours every two weeks. So green paint was not going in my head.

    Needless to say, at the end of the week, I was told "This isn't a good fit for you." We want our teachers to wear old clothes and have fun. I didn't have old clothes, just clothes! That would be double laundry for me! Besides, I couldn't ride the bus coated with mud and paint!!

    I don't think I need to shell out extra money for 'work uniforms'! I think it would be a lot different if I worked in a factory! I need a teaching job that will accept business casual, comfortable dress, but aprons should be allowed as well.
     
  35. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    They said that's the message the apron sends? Like heck, it is: that would be like saying that an apron in the kitchen sends the message that it's wrong to cook.
     
  36. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    Well, you know, she did say it was a RITZY day care... those moms and dads are afraid of aprons...:lol:
     
  37. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    So well said!!
     
  38. dovian

    dovian Comrade

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    I work in Big Urban School District, and they would have a heck of a time policing what we all wore! I have seen everything from velour tracksuits to the fullon pants and jacket suit combo. Most of us lean towards "teacher casual" - nice pants and a buttondown (or buttonup as my kids say) or sweaters in the winter, or outfits that are pants and top in matching fabric - you know, sold as one unit. I wear skirts more than most of my colleagues. One could wear jeans every day, I usually wait until the day before Xmas break, when I wear them with my one and only "teacher sweater", which is red with snowmen. It's corny but it makes me happy :)

    On scarves: Our girls are allowed to wear religious scarves only, and we have posters in the cafeteria with pictures as an example. Many of them, when they are in between weaves or setting their hair, would come in with what the principal calls a "rag" on their head otherwise. For her it is all about looking professional and ready for school. She ALWAYS wears a suit - she must have at least 20 - and she likes the kids to look sharp. Can't say I disagree, although I and most of the teachers are not so stringent about turning kids in for uniform violations - we are so busy it's usually the least of our worries! If you want to wear the same (non-uniform) green sweatshirt to school every day for a year it doesn't bother me, although I know that if I had shown up in the same sweatshirt every day in HS I would never have heard the end of it from the other kids!
     
  39. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Aug 21, 2007

    many programs in los angeles used the free-flow setting. the child care center looked like somebody's backyard. Kids have the run of the place, teachers are just statues in places. we are facilitators...we don't make rules, we enforce safe play. anything goes, except for throwing rocks!

    I also wore a hat, and sunscreen. Yet, I did return home a couple shades darker than when I left. :woot:

    Most of us would never make in there infant/toddler class. Nobody can wear shoes. Parents come in and out all day, open the fridge, take out food, start feeding kid. Mothers come in during lunch, sit in corner and breast feed. So you constantly are cleaning up and putting away food and dishes, burping clothes and soiled clothing. This is all common in infant setting. but wearing a skirt and stockings just doesn't work!!!


    Maybe I am hijacking here but...who is to say what business style is? Clothing should be appropriate for the type of work that you do!

    Of course, I started the sit-in in 7th grade when I refused to take off my pants (under skirt) after spending a half hour wrestling with the rest of my winter wear!! I knew I would be marked tardy if I didn't get in my seat by 9! I was just tired of pulling off all those clothes! Besides, it didn't make sense because I could wear pants at home! I had to stand up for the rest of the day, and I think they called my parents! Five other girls followed me, and we started wearing pants to school!

    The next month, they changed the rule. girls can wear pants.
     
  40. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Aug 21, 2007

    I thought this was about inservice day. I thought that was when you went to workshops etc. If so, your job doesn't depend on what you wear on those days. Now classroom prep is a different story. Everybody, even those who normally dress up, wears comfortable clothes.
     
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